“Thus says the Lord: ‘Let not the wise man glory in his wisdom, let not the mighty man glory in his might, let not the rich man glory in his riches; but let him who glories glory in this, that he understands and knows me…” (Jer. 9:23-24a, RSV).
There is something about the word “glory” as a verb that reverberates in my spirit. For this reason, I purposefully picked a translation of this passage that uses the word “glory” instead of the word “boast.” While I recognize that both words are proper renderings of the original Hebrew, I would like us to marinate together in the concept of glorying in our Lord.
To help us do so, here are some other ways of expressing “to glory:”
- To revel in
- To rejoice in
- To relish
- To savor
- To take great pleasure or pride in
- To delight in
- To bask in
Chewing on these meanings, we come to grasp Holy Spirit’s message to us more profoundly. Through the Prophet Jeremiah, He is instructing us not to find our glory or our delight in our own personal resources. He’s telling us, “If you are wise, don’t let your accumulated years of acumen and sagacity be your source of satisfaction. If you have a surplus of natural emotional or physical strength, don’t allow that to become where you find your identity. If you have accumulated wealth of any sort, don’t permit that reservoir God has allowed you to replace Him as the center of your pleasure.”
(In the category of “riches” we can include other varieties of abundance in addition to financial prosperity: a wealth of knowledge, a wealth of family relationships, a wealth of friendship, a wealth of experience, a wealth of prestige, and so on. Absolutely none of these things should become the primary fountain of our gratification).
Rather, revel in your personal experience of God! Rejoice in how much you have gotten to know Him. Relish the breathtaking opportunity to understand His heart. Savor the revelation of who He is. Bask in the riches of relationship with Him as He manifests Himself to you!
To glory in the Lord is to allow Him to be the crowning glory of your earthly (and everlasting) existence. It is to exult in Him so deeply, so wholeheartedly, with so much abandon, that all other pleasures and all other pursuits look like rubbish “compared to the surpassing greatness of knowing Christ Jesus [your] Lord” (Phil. 3:8, NIV). To glory in the glorious One is to be consumed by Him, by the knowledge of Him, and by an inextinguishable hunger for more of Him.
Where are you finding your glory today?
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